Dan Naden

Work like a dog today

Our dog, Ruby is a special girl.

Every morning, I rise before the sun, and jog along the streets of Austin, Texas. The scattered streetlights provide a faint glimpse of our path — speckled grey sidewalks and rock hard ink black pavement.

My knees crack, crumble; voicing their disapproval for the early wake up call, yet I press on into the distance.

Some days, I am the aggressor, dragging her along for the ride.

Most days though she’s the hard charger, pulling Dad for a roller coaster ride of sprints, pulls, lunges, barks. Some mornings, I really think I’ve awakened up the entire neighborhood. Instead of the dog whisperer, I’ve chosen the dog announcer.

Do you have 30 minutes when you work like a dog?
Do you have 30 minutes when you work like a dog?

After our morning sprint, the dog takes it easy. She rests on her soft, brown, round pillow – an occasional sigh is all I hear for hours.

This 30 minute sprint is the dog’s most concerted, best work of the day. She focused her energy, giving it her all (most days) to hunt down that other dog on the trail or that faint scent of a raccoon in the distance. Sometimes it seems she just adores chasing something unreachable, unattainable. The thrill is in never quite reaching her goal.

Did you work like a dog today? What was your 30 minute sprint? Can you say you found a zone to give your best work the most focus?

Am I saying to just work a 30 minute day? No, but wouldn’t that be special?

My message: plan your day to do your most crucial, vitally important work at the start of the day. Make those 30 minutes count.

Have a meeting that you know you need to attend, but it isn’t mission critical? Push to make it happen later in the day.

I’ve always done my best work early, but we are all different, right?. Your 30 minutes may be in the afternoon. Only you know your ‘zone time’.

Now, if only I can figure out how I can curl up on a soft, round, warm pillow for the rest of the day after the morning run. Sigh.

Until next time,

Dan Naden

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